June 5, 2023 | Awards
As a child, Amy Holleman dreamed of living in a hotel when she grew up.
“My sister remembers me talking about this from the time I was about 6 years old,” Holleman says with a laugh. “I guess I’ve always loved hotels!”
She’s always loved making people happy, too. So, while this area director of sales might not literally live at Fairfield Inn & Suites Marathon and Hampton Inn Key West, she certainly lives and breathes hospitality.
And that passion pays off. Holleman was recently honored as the Fairfield Inn & Suites Sales Leader of the Year in the Marriott Select Brands Awards program, which recognizes the top-performing individuals and hotel teams within the select service category. She was chosen best-of-the-best from among the 1,159 Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott locations across North America.
A graduate of the University of South Carolina with a bachelor’s degree in hotel, restaurant, and tourism management, Holleman joined OTO Development six years ago as director of sales at Home2 Suites Mount Pleasant and transferred to Fairfield Inn & Suites Marathon in March 2021. She was promoted to area director of sales in spring 2023 with the addition of Hampton Inn Key West.
Holleman consistently exceeds her goals — and OTO’s expectations — by championing a sales culture within her hotels and emphasizing the spirit of hospitality both inside and out. Her competitive drive is matched only by her Southern charm; she brings contagious enthusiasm into every encounter.
Regional Director of Sales Jodie Kuchta nominated Holleman for the MSB Award based on strong 2022 metrics at Fairfield Inn & Suites Marathon such as:
“I am thrilled and honored to be chosen,” says Holleman, crediting bosses who believe in her and mentors who guide her. “All I can think about are the people who have provided so much support over the years to get me to this point in my career.”
Holleman likewise credits OTO’s culture of excellence as well as the company’s emphasis on Guiding Principles. “The resources here are endless,” she says. “I’ve been encouraged to push myself career-wise, and I’ve been confident in these choices because I know, with OTO, I’m in good hands.”
Holleman loves being part of the Florida Keys team that “really gets it,” she says. “Housekeeping takes pride in the cleanliness of our guest rooms. Both front desks take pride in making guests feel welcome. I always hear our breakfast attendants asking, ‘Is there anything else you need?’”
By fostering an “everyone sells” attitude, Holleman garners many a new business lead from her front desk teams, who watch for logos on shirts and make a habit of asking guests the purpose of their stay.
“The entire hotel plays a vital role in hotel sales,” Holleman says. “My job would be a LOT harder without that partnership.”
What else does she love? “Shifting share from the comp set — I absolutely love that!” she says, while confessing her least favorite thing is losing business to the competition or not getting her fair share on the STR Report. “Oh, that’s like a punch to my stomach. I’m not even exaggerating.”
When Holleman is out of the office she is usually out on the water fishing. A recent newlywed, she also spends plenty of time with her husband, Brandon.
Life in hotels isn’t exactly what Holleman imagined at 6 years old.
“It’s definitely not a walk-in-the-park type job,” she admits. “There are many challenges. But once you overcome them, it’s so rewarding.”
CAPTION: FLORIDA KEYS AREA Director of Sales Amy Holleman celebrates her MSB Award with Marriott executives, from left, Eric Jacobs, senior vice president of select brands; Mary Garris, senior director of brand management; and Erika Alexander, chief global officer of global operations.